Sleeping Positions - Posture and Height Increase

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It doesn't take a genius to work out that sleep is important for growth / height increase. Most people know this, however it's not just a matter of 'getting your 8 hours', there's a lot more to it than that. Yes, it's true that growth hormone is secreted at increased levels during deep sleep. Yes, it's also true that sleeping helps the discs within your spine to repair and expand, thus result in us being taller in the morning.

What is also equally important during sleep is your sleeping position, due to it's direct impact on your posture. You spend a third of your life sleeping, so it's a great opportunity to help perfect your posture, which could also result in height increase as I discuss below.

Why is posture important for height??

The human spine has a natural curvature. It's been designed to be this way over hundreds of millions of years, through evolution and natural selection. There's good reasons for why it's curved, mainly because it allows us to maintain centre of gravity whilst walking on two legs, a straight spine could not achieve this. The problem is that muscle weakness or even laziness can cause the spine to curve more than it should do, this is poor posture and the result is not just unpleasing on the eye, but also it reduces your height. This is illustrated in the image below where you can clearly see the person with poor posture is shorter, despite every bone in the body being the same length as the person on the left.

Posture Height

Sleep position and posture -  a recipe for height increase

The first thing I would say about sleeping is to make sure your comfortable. You need a good nights sleep without being woken to ensure you maximize your secretion of growth hormone, if you are still young enough. The body secretes much more growth hormone during sleeping. Anyway, about posture. During the day we can tend to be a little lazy and not stand straight, but during sleep there's no real excuse. Sleeping in a poor position will make your posture worse, there's no doubt about that. Use sleeping as a chance to correct your posture and prevent too much curvature of the spine.

Research has shown that the average person suffers from poor posture resulting in 1 inch of height loss 

...the average person has 1 inch of height loss due to poor posture

If the average person loses almost 1 inch in height due to poor posture, consider that if you have worse than average posture, you could be losing even more. I see young people with poor posture on a day to day basis, not in my research institute, but on the streets. A height loss of 1.5 inches in young people due to poor posture is common.

 

So what's the best position?

Sleeping Positionsx

The illustration above shows the most common sleeping positions, with foetus being the most popular. In my opinion, the foetus position is fine, as long as the head is positioned in way that it is not too far forward. Your head should be placed so that the natural curvature of the spine is in place. I also recommend the soldier position.

Just remember to:

  • Have a good mattress so your spine retains it natural shape.
  • Don't have a thick pillow which results in your head being pushed too far forward. Iif your in a soldier position, choose a thin pillow. Don't use no pillow, this will cause your head to tilt back which pushes your chin forward, resulting is poor curvature of the neck.
  • If in foetus position, use a thick enough pillow to prevent your head moving to the side.
  • Your knees should not be locked straight in any position.
  • Always ensure your comfortable for quality sleep.

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Comments

Robert's picture
I measured myself with a lazy posture, which I normally stand like. I then measured myseld with a good posture. There was a three quarter inch difference.

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